TRENTON – The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today that New Jersey’s total non-farm employment gains for 2012 were the highest in more than a decade.
Total non-farm employment gains for 2012 were revised upward by 18,400 jobs, from 48,000 to 66,400 jobs, the state Labor Department reported.
The over-the-year gain (December 2011 to December 2012) marks the largest total non-farm employment boost reported for the state since 2000, according to the state. Private sector growth in 2012 also was the highest since 2000, according to the revised federal data.
The revised BLS data shows New Jersey grew 59,100 private sector jobs in 2012, up by 13,000 private sector jobs over the preliminary BLS estimates, the state said. The state has gained 117,600 private sector jobs since February 2010, the low point for private sector employment during the recession.
“The revised numbers provide further confirmation that New Jersey’s labor market has been strengthening. What we saw as firm job growth is now shown to have been even higher. The ongoing surge in the state’s labor force count shows that residents are increasingly willing to search for employment in this better environment,” said Charles Steindel, Chief Economist for the New Jersey Department of Treasury, in a release.
The BLS also revised the state’s unemployment rate downward for each of the last six months of 2012, settling at 9.5 percent in December.
Preliminary monthly reports had put the unemployment rate at 9.5 percent for January 2013, although employment in January increased by 3,000 private sector jobs, according to preliminary BLS estimates.